When you need to send money to a friend, family member, or business contact, a wire transfer is one of the fastest and most reliable ways to do so. Here’s what goes into sending a wire transfer, as well as how long wire transfers will take. 

What is a wire transfer? 

The term “wire transfer” refers to any type of electronic transfer of money. A bank wire is the most common, traditional bank-to-bank transfer. In these types of transfers, an amount goes from one bank account to another using the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) network or FedWire network. 

A wire transfer can also refer to international wire transfers, also known as remittance transfers. Banks, credit unions, and services like Sigue can process these types of money transfers. As a result, the answer to “how long does a wire transfer take?” is not straightforward. It depends on where the account to which you are transferring is located.

How long will a transfer take? 

Domestic wire transfers – those between US bank accounts – typically take 24 hours to complete. International wire transfers can take between one and five business days. 

It only takes a few minutes to request and initiate a domestic wire transfer. The money thereafter moves quickly between bank accounts; there is usually no bank hold placed on money received via wire transfer. However, it may take several hours for the bank that receives the wired amount to show the proceeds in the recipient’s account. This is because there are a few administrative things an employee may need to do manually to make the funds available.  

Why might a wire transfer take longer?

There are three factors that affect the speed of a wire transfer: 

  1. The time of day when you submit the transfer request
  2. Where you’re sending the funds
  3. The method (network) your bank uses to make wire transfers

When you initiate the transfer can impact when the wired money arrives in the recipient’s account. Banks and credit unions are permitted to set their own cut-off times – e.g., when they stop processing wire transfers each day. Some banks, for instance, set a cut-off for wire transfers at 3 PM. When you initiate a transfer at 4 PM, the funds will be recorded as “received” on Thursday – meaning the 24-hour window actually extends into Friday. Likewise, banks can’t complete transfers on weekends or federal bank holidays. 

Secondly, as previously mentioned, domestic and international transfers have varying timelines. There are some countries that are designated asslow to pay” countries. What this means is there may be further delays. Check with your bank when making a wire transfer to a slow to pay country to learn more about what to expect. 

Bank Wire Transfer

Image Credits

Finally, there are a few ways your bank might process the wire transfer. FedWire is a system designed for wire transfers with big amounts or those that are time-sensitive. It means the amount is processed immediately, but also it can only be used for domestic wire transfers. Another option is CHIPS, which stands for the Clearing House Interbank Payments System. It “batch transfers” which means that it can process multiple transactions as part of a batch process. And finally, the most commonly used wire transfer service for international exchanges SWIFT, a service that enables banks to pass money through intermediary banks until reaching its final destination. CHIPS and SWIFT wire transfers can take slightly longer than FedWire because of cut-off times and other administrative delays. 

Alternatives to a transfer via wire

There are a few alternatives to using a wire transfesr, like Sigue Pay or a money order service like Western Union. ACH transfers are similar in that these transfers move from bank to bank, but they use the Automated Clearing House network rather than SWIFT or FedWire. ACH transfers typically take one to two days. There are also plenty of peer-to-peer services like Zelle or Paypal that allow you to send money quickly, but be aware that these services are less secure than a bank wire. Speak to a bank representative or financial advisor to learn more about ways you can send money quickly.


This article was originally posted at Sigue.com


Featured Image Credits: Pixabay

There are plenty of great reasons why you might want to place a money order. Maybe you don’t have a bank account. Or maybe you don’t want to risk a check bouncing. Some people like the security of money orders – you know it won’t get lost in the mail. It’s a safe way to make a payment, especially if you want your personal information kept safe. 

When you need to get a money order, chances are the first thing you’ll look for is money orders nearby. Here are some of the best places to get a money order – many of which likely have locations right near you. 

Sigue

In addition to offering secure money transfers, Sigue offers money orders through its extensive authorized agent network in all 50 states. Sigue authorized agents are conveniently located within your neighborhood through local retailer and merchant locations. You can find an authorized Sigue agent location by going into Sigue.com.  

Money orders are a great alternative for customers who prefer to manage their financial obligations without a checking account to pay for rent, utility bills, auto payments, and other financial obligations. Landlords and creditors prefer money orders over personal checks to minimize their risk exposure, bank fees, and headaches from returned items for nonsufficient funds.  

You can purchase a money order from any authorized Sigue location at a low fee. There is no proof of purchase required and no expiration date on money orders. Please make sure to complete and keep the stub attached to the money order in case the money order is lost and needs a replacement. 

Find a Sigue location near you or download the SiguePay app to send money to 50+ countries.  

Walmart

As one of the biggest retailers in America, there’s a good chance there’s a Walmart offering money orders near you. Money orders are available at any Walmart Supercenter or Neighborhood Market. Walmart partners with MoneyGram to provide money order services. They will charge you a max fee of  $0.88, but the exact fees vary by location. Go to the Customer Service Desk or Money Services Center at your nearest Walmart to find out more. 

Find a Walmart Supercenter near you

US Postal Service

The US Postal Service is also a great place to get a money order that’s probably close by. You can buy or cash postal money orders from any post office location, and international money orders cup to $700 (500 for El Salvador and Guyana) can be purchased as well. The USPS is able to send/receive domestic money orders of up to $1,000 with the following fees: a fee of $1.25 for a money order of $0.01 to $500.00; a fee of $1.75 for a money order of $500.01 to $1,000.00. 

Find a US Post Office near you

Western Union

Western Union is often found in retailers like grocery stores and convenience stores. Therefore, there’s a good chance there’s a Western Union agent somewhere near you. Fees vary by location when you get a money order through Western Union. However, you can send a money order of up to $1,000 through this service. 

Find a Western Union agent near you.

Money Gram

Money Gram is a competitor of Western Union. It’s also most commonly found in retailers like Walmart, grocery stores, pharmacies, and convenience stores. Expect to pay around 70 cents per money order with Money Gram, but this may vary by location. 

Find a Money Gram location near you. 

7-Eleven

7-Eleven has a big nationwide footprint and presence in 17 countries worldwide. It’s a great option to get a money order – for a maximum amount of $1,000. 7-Eleven partners with both Money Gram and Western Union, depending on the location. The fees vary but expect that a money order will cost you 1-3% of the total amount of the money order with a minimum fee of $0.65. 

Find a 7-Eleven near you.

Banks and credit unions

Not all banks and credit unions offer money orders, but some will. Unfortunately, banks are one of the most expensive ways to get a money order. It depends on the institution, but you can expect to pay around $5 when you get a money order through a bank. Chase Bank, Santander Bank, TD Bank, and Wells Fargo are a few banks that offer money orders, but we recommend calling ahead of time. You may need to have an account open with the bank in order to take advantage of that service. 

To learn more about money orders, as well as our other ways to send money internationally, check out our FAQs or get in touch with the team at Sigue.


This article was originally posted at Sigue


Featured Image Credits: Pixabay

Related Content: Blockchain Remittance: The Future of International Money

My parents back home. My wife back home. My grandmother back home. My son back home. Speak with almost any immigrant, and you’ll find that nearly all are sending money to their families in their home country. Often moving for the hopes of a better life, the lives of those they have left at home are not forgotten.

The International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR)

The International Day of Family Remittances (IDFR), adopted by the United Nations General Assembly and celebrated annually on the 16th of June, recognizes the contribution of over 200 million migrants to improve the lives of their 800 million family members back home, and to create a future of hope for their children. The day serves to bring awareness to the positive impact these contributions have on the local communities, countries, and even entire regions.  

What is a remittance? 

A remittance is a sum of money sent abroad and typically used to pay family members back in a person’s home country. These payments are usually sent by mail but can be sent via wire transfer or through increasingly common apps/services. Tracking remittances is difficult due to many countries lack of records and the fact that only funds sent through formal channels are included; however, economists at the World Bank estimate that over $690 Billion was sent by migrants to individuals in their home countries in 2018.

Not All Remittances Are Created Equal

In raw numbers, India and China send the most money back home, almost $63 Billion and $61 Billion respectively; however, when looking at the impact remittances have on their home country, it’s necessary to identify the relative value of the payments vs. the home nations GDP. For example, as referenced in the previous paragraph, India received almost $63 Billion in remittances in 2017; however, this only accounts for 2.8% of India’s $2.3 trillion GDP. Contrast this with El Salvador and Nepal, whose remittances were equivalent to 17% and 28% of their GDP respectively: what an impact! You can already see how large of a role these payments can and do play in their home countries.

Remittances Fighting Poverty

It’s estimated that over half of all remittance flows go to rural areas, where poverty and hunger are concentrated. But do these payments actually have as much of an impact as we think? Well, studies have shown that a 10% increase in remittance can reduce the poverty rate by almost 4%! Despite these statistics, not everyone thinks remittances are as beneficial as they claim to be.

 

Remittance

Image Credits: Pixabay

Remittances: Benefit or Detriment?

Many officials argue that remittances have not been proven to spur economic growth in the home countries. In fact, the data supports this claim by estimating that a majority of remittance payments are spent on consumption vs. any developmental project. Additionally, some say that remittances encourage individuals not to work by providing a safety net. In Gambia, where remittances account for roughly 20% of Gambia’s GDP, not everyone is believes this to be beneficial. Renowned Gambian academic, Dr. Ismaila Ceesay, argues that the large amount of remittance comes at a huge cost to Gambians by creating a dependency and leaving workers unproductive: “Many Gambians don’t want to work anymore. Because they know that somebody is going to send money.” While the overall economic impact of remittances on a home country’s economy is hotly debated, it’s difficult to argue the positive impact these payments have on an individual or family.

We often lose sight of the economic disparity in the world and how even small amounts of money can change lives. As Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development said: “It is not about the money being sent home, it is about the impact on people’s lives. The small amounts of $200 or $300 that each migrant sends home make up about 60 per cent of the family’s household income, and this makes an enormous difference in their lives and the communities in which they live.” Let us celebrate the contributions made by these individuals, as they work hard to build a better life not just for them, but for those they left behind.


This article by Miquel Sousa was previously published on SendFriend

About SendFriend:

In the aftermath of the devastating earthquake of 2010 hit Haiti, our founder, David, was a young analyst at the Office of the Special Envoy to Haiti at the World Bank. He witnessed firsthand the resilience and strength of the worldwide Haitian community, as Haitians around the world sent home over $2 billion to support their loved ones in their time of need.

However, as Haitians stepped up their financial support, David saw money transfer companies charge exorbitant fees, north of 7% for people to send money home.

Visits to the Philippines exposed David to the global nature of this problem. As a student at MIT, he was inspired by blockchain technology and guided toward it by Professors and technologists as a potential solution to the high cost of international remittances. The result was SendFriend.


Featured Image Credits: Pixabay

Blockchain Remittance

Blockchain remittance firms are experiencing record growth thanks to an increase in global migration. As populations continue to migrate, the need to send money back to their home countries is growing. Blockchain remittance firms are providing this essential service at a reduced rate.

These international payments are vital to the livelihood of millions of people around the world. They’re primarily used for living expenses such as food, transportation, and education. Making these statements more tangible, East Asian countries received $129 billion in remittance payments last year according to the World Bank.

Remittance Stats

A recent study revealed that the remittance sector has grown to a staggering $585 billion industry. In 2017 alone, $439 billion was sent to developing countries, equating to around 700 million families living off of remittance payments globally.

Remittance payments have also become the main source of foreign income for many nations. According to a May report in Forbes, Mexico’s remittance payments have now superseded their oil industry to become the country’s main source of foreign income.

Mexico isn’t alone in their dependence on remittance payments. The World Bank released their 2016 remittance statistics in April of this year. The report revealed that remittance payments are now more stable than private capital flow in terms of international growth. This means that the remittance industry could be a smart investment in most parts of the world.

The High Costs of Sending Remittance Payments

Sending money internationally isn’t cheap, and non-profits such as the World Bank have been combating these high fees for years. Since 2008, remittance fees have declined 7.32 percent. This decrease saved migrants $90 billion in fees over the same time frame.

Whenever someone sends money internationally, numerous third-party organizations are involved in the transaction. Each verification step adds a small fee to the total cost. In addition, international conversion rates must be accounted for. World Bank reports have averaged these costs to be around 7.45 percent of each transaction processed.

Blockchain Remittance Fintech: Technology to Help Millions

Blockchain remittance companies are taking the industry to the next level by facilitating a frictionless experience for users. Traditionally, international money transfers can take days to complete due to the number of verifications that are required. Blockchain remittance companies provide instant money transfer services.

Remittance Firms: Abra

Africa relies heavily on remittance payments. Until recently, large financial firms, such as Western Union and MoneyGram, dominated the market. This changed when blockchain remittance companies began to spring up across the continent. Firms such as Abra are now changing the local markets.

The Abra platform allows users to transfer money for free across the globe. In addition to these cost savings, users are able to send transactions directly from their mobile devices. Abra offers a direct peer-to-peer money transfer technology that doesn’t require the use of any bank. And, the platform automatically deposits funds onto debit cards that it provides for users.

Remittance Payments via Abra

Abra is pioneering remittance FinTech with this all-inclusive approach. This non-reliance on the traditional banking system is important in developing nations because they often lack the means to implement the expensive infrastructure required to institute these organizations. By circumventing the current system, Abra users don’t have to worry about how to transfer money from blockchain to bank account.

Migrants are saving on fees and conversion rate costs by removing the middleman from the remittance system. These savings are too large to ignore, and now, industry leaders are researching this technology.

Blockchain Remittance on the Rise

For the first time ever, this year’s Global Money Transfer Summit (GMTS) will feature blockchain remittance FinTech. The GMTS is the largest international money transfer conference in the world. Every year, representatives from major financial institutions are chosen to speak at this event.

Among those invitees are representatives from Ripple, Stellar, and Cashaa. These popular cryptocurrency representatives will discuss the future of the money transfer industry and why blockchain technology is an essential path for the industry to travel.

Remittance Cryptocurrencies: Ripple

Ripple (XRP) was one of the first bank-focused cryptocurrencies to enter the market in 2012. Designed primarily for large international inter-bank money transfers, Ripple’s developers describe it as a real-time gross settlement system. The Ripple platform utilizes the XRP token to facilitate these global transfers instantly.

Ripple has managed to secure major partnerships with numerous large financial organizations including Fidor Bank in Munich, Bank of America, and Santander. In May 2015, Ripple became AML compliant after receiving a $700,000 fine from FinCEN for not complying with the Bank Secrecy Act. Today, the cryptocurrency remains in the top five coins in terms of market capitalization.

Remittance Fintech: A New Horizon

Blockchain technology is transforming the remittance sector, and Ripple isn’t alone in their quest to service the international money transfer industry. Today, numerous remittance-focused cryptocurrencies are available. You can expect to see further integration of this game-changing technology.

Now that the industry has openly acknowledged the benefits that blockchain technology brings to the table, the demand for blockchain-based remittance services is expected to increase significantly. This is great news for the millions of families that rely on this lifeline to survive.


This article by David Hamilton was previously published on Coincentral.com

About the Author:

David Hamilton aka DavidtheWriter has published thousands of cryptocurrency related articles. Currently, he resides in the epicenter of the cryptomarket – Puerto Rico. David is a strong advocate for blockchain technologies and financial sovereignty.


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